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Dot Forum: New Genre Art

Written by Julian Duron   
Tuesday, 17 February 2009 05:59
The first of a new Fecal Face segment by our NYC correspondent Julian Duron highlighting Visual Culture and art calling everyone to join in on the conversation!

My name is Julian Duron. I live in Brooklyn and work in Manhattan. I would like to take this opportunity to say hello to the Fecal Face readers and establish a new column; an open forum for expressing various observations and studies not just of my own but also those of the public. This thread is the perfect vehicle for sharing work from emerging or established artists, expressing opinions and discussing insightful topics such as fine art, photography, video, film, etc. In this segment I would like to focus on Visual Culture, which is the foundation for those involved in any artistic field or study, and hope to get some healthy feedback. This is the first post of many to come. Thanks for reading!

- Julian Duron julian(at)fecalface.com

Thought 1:
New Genre Art

New doesn't really hold the same meaning for the younger crowd because they grew up with the internet, but in order to best describe New Genre I want to describe some contemporary channels and identify works utilizing them for exhibiting and materializing art. A channel in this sense refers to any outlet for communication among the technological variety of media such as video, the internet, sound, in other words it covers digital art mediums of any kind.

For years I have been noting the increasing popularization of New Genre works utilizing channels like YouTube, websites or blogs for promotion/exhibition and have realized these outlets are often used as a medium themselves, like internet artists. Some obvious factors such as gender, race, social class, and age play a role in the interpretation of visual media, like the difference between a man and woman watching a feminist video or how a movie about Black History would be experienced between a Caucasian and an African American. With such variety in art mediums these days it seems art enthusiasts develop a broad and generalized taste rather than preference for a specific aesthetic, establishing some sort of coherent ideology or set of beliefs for themselves, which can form a collective such as Fecal Face, Wooster Collective or a "crew". This "general taste phenomenon" is a fairly new thing, for instance, cubists made art that looked cubist, or surrealist art had a surrealist aesthetic and so on. During these periods of art, it was hard to find artists working outside of the box, granted their small minority emerged from a previous establishment, but my point is the difference now is an abandonment from specified aesthetics all together, which conceptually has been around for a while, but never more than now.

The Fecal Face forum is a perfect opportunity to openly communicate about art and establish a popular dialogue in the process. As we know, discussion between a few individuals promotes an inclination for talk among a larger group, and I believe the accelerated pace of this process, meaning the pace at which information is spread, raises a number of rich topics in itself. So with New Genre how can we think outside of the box? Is there a box anymore? Fuck the fucking box! Inside or out, emphasis in our relentless post-post-postmodern movement will be focused more on bending myths that shaped the last ten to fifteen years rather than defining any sort of framework.

Thought 2:
Mash Culture is Old!

What now? We artists of the whatever-you-want-to-call-it Mash Culture have been beat over the head by classic myths or guidelines such as "not selling out", "fuck biters", and "DIY or die" which persuaded artists and use of technological media channels throughout the late 90's and into the 00's. It resonated in the minds of young people, which worked very effectively to motivate, stimulate, and inspire new work. The use of new media channels has had many positive consequences by re-conceptualizing the artist entrepreneur: you guys, the gallery: Fecal Face Dot Gallery (Dot Com), the curator: John Trippe, and the critic: Me, detracting from certain prescriptions that have weighed down young artists before internet technology. With the globalization of instant information exchange, and now that most people are comfortable operating inside such a vast arena, I believe we should focus on the differential rather than the hierarchical, meaning comparable differences, accessibility and open feedback rather than exclusion, authorities and guidelines for art in general. Commercial, personal, commissioned, gallery, streets, walls, floor, legal or illegal, who really gives a fuck? I think Mike Giant said it best in his open-interview a few weeks back here on Fecal Face regarding culture.

The question was:

"Everybody knows hipsters, graffiti, track bikes, etc are dead and pretty much played out. Where do you see the next trend/counterculture scene headed?"

Mike answered by stating:

"Gosh, that's harsh, Kurt. First of all, I'm a 'grandpa hipster,' and it suits me just fine. And after dedicating almost 20 years to writing graffiti, I hope it never dies. And as for track bikes, there have been hip, cocky young men and women riding them around the streets of San Francisco for over 100 years! Look it up. None of this stuff is played out, dead, or otherwise. It's ongoing. You'll see for yourself as you get older. The next thing will simply be a remix of shit from the past, because none of us are really all that imaginative anyway."

Mike's answer describes the general ideology regarding visual culture and art today and Kurt's question obviously represents the recent past (sorry Kurt). Once again one's background and age play a major roll, but the concept of get over it is a dynamic and broad forefront in a new era of art and visual culture. So much so that I believe there's a possibility that even the sav-est of savage assholes could appreciate something that's well thought out, worked, and executed professionally. Okay probably not, but it is my hope this notion will break down a few petty resentments now seldom seen, but bullshit like the conflict between "self-taught" and "academic' artists. This is obviously a product of ignorance, misinterpretation and pride, but what ever happened to "to each his own". And hey, everyone that has been making art his or her whole life is pretty much self-taught anyway. I learned how to make art from Ed Roth, R. Crumb, Charles Burns, Daniel Clowes and the cholos I grew up with. Tell us what you know, or explain why you think what you think, but don't blather on about what you think you know and not back it up with a solid argument. I use this as a general example because I hear it among people online and in life. As mentioned above, this "ideology" has much more to do with taste rather than aesthetics and no longer concentrates on mark making or any specific usage of material. It provides an expansive platform for artists to produce work upon and not a box to make work inside of.

Recently, and to no surprise, these older concepts are being refined and sold by ad agencies, which I don't see as a negative thing; it is reality. As you can see in the images below, a very successful ad for the opening of The New Museum in SoHo, consumer culture has adopted most popular concepts pertaining to street art and graffiti-related work in order to establish a new consumer subculture, in this case a sort of KR aesthetic. "The New Museum came to us and asked us to do something that would have the whole city talking about it," said advertising agency Droga 5's Ji Lee, who was the Creative Director on the New Museum project. "It was really important to us to create a sense of mystery." It was a pretty epic move indeed, and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing this progression on the way to school over the week preceding the opening. The New Museum and formalities of the exhibition will be the topic of another post in itself coming soon.

Stage 1 & 2

Stage 3

I would like to share one artist's work I have experienced over the past few years, that, at first glance, I admittedly overlooked, but who in my opinion represents each thought mentioned above. The following is just one example of New Genre work so I would enjoy others submitting artists that are not only working with newer media channels such as internet, video, sound art, etc. but also representing this "post post postmodern" ideology. Feel free to leave your comments below, but try to explain why you think what you think, and please avoid being anonymous!

Ryan Trecartin

The internet has made identity of the exhibition completely indistinct. For instance, without the measurements and details of an image there is now way to determine medium, scale, etc. However one making video work like the now infamous Ryan Trecartin, can exhibit their actual intentions over the web, and as he has specifically done with YouTube, not only exhibit but complete work using the process as a medium (as in the quality, compilation, finish). His work in the 2006 Whitney Biennial, as in regular posts on YouTube, display a self reflective/reflexive barrage of relentless stock scenes abandoning the linear narrative resulting in a multi-interpretive series of exceptionally intelligent video performances. It may not be clear at first glance, but these videos as a whole, a compilation entitled I BE AREA, represent many aspects of the modern ideology as mentioned above. As you can see in the following videos, Trecartin poses trans or genderless characters, women and children painted with hyper-color makeup in low-grade videos performing dialogue that employs clich├ęs of historical, racial, and child-like subject matter ranging into many aspects of popular visual culture. His warped transitions, exceptional sound tracks, jumps between subject matter, dark characters, and witty narratives make for a refreshing dose of the "anti-self." In this example I urge everyone to not only focus on the visual aspects of these videos, but also the audio. (I will thoroughly discuss my ideas on the prevalence of "anti-self" and "anti-ego" in another segment.) Enjoy!


Alison Blickle @NYC's Kravets Wehby Gallery

Los Angeles based Alison Blickle who showed here in San Francisco at Eleanor Harwood last year (PHOTOS) recently showed new paintings in New York at Kravets Wehby Gallery. Lovely works.

Interview w/ Kevin Earl Taylor

We haven't been featuring many interviews as of late. Let's change that up as we check in with a few local San Francisco artists like Kevin Earl Taylor here whom we studio visited back in 2009 (PHOTOS & VIDEO). It's been awhile, Kevin...

Peter Gronquist @The Shooting Gallery

If you like guns and boobs, head on over to the Shooting Gallery; just don't expect the work to be all cheap ploys and hot chicks. With Make Stuff by Peter Gronquist (Portland) in the main space and Morgan Slade's Snake in the Eagle's Shadow in the project space, there is plenty spectacle to be had, but if you look just beyond it, you might actually get something out of the shows.

Jay Bo at Hamburg's Circle Culture

Berlin based Jay Bo recently held a solo show at Hamburg's Circle Culture featuring some of his most recent paintings. We lvoe his work.


Fifty24SF opened Street Anatomy, a new solo show by Austrian artist Nychos a week ago last Friday night. He's been steadily filling our city with murals over the last year, with one downtown on Geary St. last summer, and new ones both in the Haight and in Oakland within the last few weeks, but it was really great to see his work up close and in such detail.

Gator Skater +video

Nate Milton emailed over this great short Gator Skater which is a follow-up to his Dog Skateboard he emailed to us back in 2011... Any relation to this Gator Skater?

Ferris Plock Online Show Now Online as of April 25th

5 new wonderful large-scale paintings on wood panel are available. visit: www.ffdg.net

ClipODay II: Needles & Pens 11 Years!!

Congrats on our buddies at Needles and Pens on being open and rad for 11 years now. Mission Local did this little short video featuring Breezy giving a little heads up on what Needles and Pens is all about.


In a filmmaker's thinking, we wish more videos were done in this style. Too much editing and music with a lacking in actual content. Just because you can doesn't mean you should.

AJ Fosik in Tokyo at The Hellion Gallery

Matt Wagner recently emailed over some photos from The Hellion Gallery in Tokyo, who recently put together a show with AJ Fosik (Portland) called Beast From a Foreign Land. The gallery gave twelve of Fosik's sculptures to twelve Japanese artists (including Hiro Kurata who is currently showing in our group show Salt the Skies) to paint, burn, or build upon.

Ferris Plock - Online Show, April 25th

FFDG is pleased to announce an exclusive online show with San Francisco based Ferris Plock opening on Friday, April 25th (12pm Pacific Time) featuring 5 new medium sized acrylic paintings on wood.


Backwoods Gallery in Melbourne played host to a huge group exhibition a couple of weeks back, with "Gold Blood, Magic Weirdos" Curated by Melbourne artist Sean Morris. Gold Blood brought together 25 talented painters, illustrators and comic artists from Australia, the US, Singapore, England, France and Spain - and marked the end of the Magic Weirdos trilogy, following shows in Perth in 2012 and London in 2013.

Jeremy Fish at LA's Mark Moore Gallery

San Francisco based Fecal Pal Jeremy Fish opened his latest solo show Hunting Trophies at LA's Mark Moore Gallery last week to massive crowds and cabin walls lined with imagery pertaining to modern conquest and obsession.

John Felix Arnold III on the Road to NYC

Well, John Felix Arnold III is at it again. This time, he and Carolyn LeBourgios packed an entire show into the back of a Prius and drove across the country to install it at Superchief Gallery in NYC. I met with him last week as he told me about the trip over delicious burritos at Taqueria Cancun (which is right across the street from FFDG and serves what I think is the best burrito in the city) as the self proclaimed "Only overweight artist in the game" spilled all the details.

FRENCH in Melbourne

London based illustrator FRENCH recently held a show of new works at the Melbourne based Mild Manners

Henry Gunderson at Ever Gold, SF

Ever Gold opened a new solo show by NYC based Henry Gunderson a couple Saturday nights ago and it was literally packed. So packed I couldn't actually see most of the art - but a big crowd doesn't seem like a problem. I got a good laugh at what I would call the 'cock climbing wall' as it was one of the few pieces I could see over the crowd. I haven't gotten a chance to go back and check it all out again, but I'm definitely going to as the paintings that I could get a peek at were really high quality and intruiguing. You should do the same.

Mario Wagner @Hashimoto

Mario Wagner (Berkeley) opened his new solo show A Glow that Transfers Creativity last Saturday night at Hashimoto Contemporary in San Francisco.

Serge Gay Jr. @Spoke Art

The paintings in the show are each influenced by a musician, ranging from Freddy Mercury, to Madonna, to A Tribe Called Quest and they are so stylistically consistent with each musician's persona that they read as a cohesive body of work with incredible variation. If you told me they were each painted by a different person, I would not hesitate to believe you and it's really great to see a solo show with so much variety. The show is fun, poppy, very well done, and absolutely worth a look and maybe even a listen.

NYCHOS Mural on Ashbury and Haight

NYCHOS completed this great new mural on the corner of Haight and Ashbury in San Francisco on Tuesday. Looks Amazing.

Sun Milk in Vienna

With rising rent in SF and knowing mostly other young artists without capitol, I desired a way to live rent free, have a space to do my craft, and get to see more of the world. Inspired by the many historical artists who have longed similar longings I discovered the beauty of artist residencies. Lilo runs Adhoc Collective in Vienna which not only has a fully equipped artists creative studio, but an indoor halfpipe, and private artist quarters. It was like a modern day castle or skate cathedral. It exists in almost a utopic state, totally free to those that apply and come with a real passion for both art and skateboarding

"How To Lose Yourself Completely" by Bryan Schnelle

I just wanted to share with you a piece I recently finished which took me 4 years to complete. Titled "How To Lose Yourself Completely (The September Issue)", it consists of a copy of the September 2007 issue of Vogue magazine (the issue they made the documentary about) with all faces masked with a sharpie, and everything else entirely whited out. 840 pages of fun. -Bryan Schnelle

Tyler Bewley ~ Recent Works

Some great work from San Francisco based Tyler Bewley.

Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery

While walking our way across San Francisco on Saturday we swung through the opening receptions for Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery in the Mission.

Jeremy Fish Solo Show in Los Angeles

Jeremy Fish opens Hunting Trophies tonight, Saturday April 5th, at the Los Angeles based Mark Moore Gallery. The show features new work from Fish inside the "hunting lodge" where viewers climb inside the head of the hunter and explore the history of all the animals he's killed.

The Albatross and the Shipping Container

Beautiful piece entitled "The Albatross and the Shipping Container", Ink on Paper, Mounted to Panel, 47" Diameter, by San Francisco based Martin Machado now on display at FFDG. Stop in Saturday (1-6pm) to view the group show "Salt the Skies" now running through April 19th. 2277 Mission St. at 19th.

The Marsh Barge - Traveling the Mississippi River from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to quit my job, move out of my house, leave everything and travel again. So on August 21, 2013 I pushed a canoe packed full of gear into the headwaters of the Mississippi River in Lake Itasca, Minnesota, along with four of my best friends. Exactly 100 days later, I arrived at a marina near the Gulf of Mexico in a sailboat.